Saturday, September 10, 2011

Little Wonder

I finally managed to get ahold of a 1948 Topps Tatoo wrapper for the Archive ant it arrived today.  I was all set to deposit it in the super-secure storage device I maintain at the Main Topps Archives Research Complex but when I measured it just before doing so, I found small surprise.  First things first-and I mean that-this was indeed the first Topps novelty gum product, issued in June of 1948, or just when school was letting out and the tatoo market would be at its apex:

The fold line obscures it but that is a 1948 copyright and as we already knew, it was a Bubbles Inc., product. I blew it up a little so you can see:

The Tatoo is muted in color, as expected and the little rip, endemic to all the smaller Tatoo-type wrappers, shows at the right below but it would be at the top in a vertical position:

These came in the "Tourist Pouch" configuration, as detailed here. I still desperately need a Tourist Pouch so I can mine its secrets but have not had any luck even finding a color scan of one.  The front of the wrapper is indeed quite slick as I thought it would be but the surprise was that the wrapper measures a full 1/4" shorter than I presumed it would.  The width was the same 1 3/16" that it's younger brother had in 1949 but it's only 1 3/8" long. I don't know if a smaller gum tab was used in '48 or if they just used a shorter wrapper.  As always with Topps, I have learned to expect the unexpected.

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